Doctrine of Discovery

“Doctrine of Discovery”

Rev. Julia Hamilton | October 9, 2017

In the statement of the core principles affirmed by Unitarian Universalism, “the Free and Responsible search for truth and meaning.” is listed as number four.

Taking this principle seriously can be very difficult, because it asks us to be both free and responsible. It points to an expansive curiosity as well as a responsibility to accept the truth where we find it – whether or not that truth is convenient, comfortable, or easy to understand.

We are living in a time when the truth, as many of us have learned it, is under scrutiny. Stories are changing. Things that were easy for many people are becoming harder. Race and gender and identity are being reexamined. The histories that were taught in school, the national identity of the entire United States, it is all shifting. It’s not only the future that feels uncertain, it is also now the past that feels ambiguous as well.

This is difficult to navigate, but I believe our faith calls us to be courageous in this moment. It calls us to seek the truth, however difficult that search may be. It calls upon us to unlearn old stories, and challenges us to consider what new possibilities might emerge from this process. When I talk about building the Beloved Community, this unlearning is part of the work.

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